(Closed) Opinions, suggestions and feedback needed on our engagement party

posted 6 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 16
214 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2016 - Cambridge Mill

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kismet34:  You sound exactly like me! I have done a lot of DIY projects for our wedding- and To me the whole point of the wedding is to marry your best friend and have those nearest and dearest celebrate with you. To me its not about the”show” of the wedding or how much things cost. I just want to celebrate and have a goood time with everyone through the ENTIRE adventure… including the engagement party which kicked off the whole wedding celebration!

Post # 17
93 posts
Worker bee

I do not think it is appropriate to host your own engagement party.  It does sound very tacky and gift grabby to me.  

Sending an invitation to someone out of town that you know can’t make it and including information on how they can give you a gift is not ok, IMO.  


Post # 18
2111 posts
Buzzing bee

I think there is absolutely nothing wrong with planning your own engagement party. I live in Australia and it is the norm here that the bride and groom will plan their own engagement party.

The one thing I think is tacky with engagement parties is when the couple starts a registry or has a wishing well (and says they have one in the invite!)

Post # 20
43 posts
  • Wedding: June 2016

I dont think its bad to through your own party but I would add a cohost to the invite, maybe your mom or a friend. I dont think engagement parties are something people generally bring gifts too! Thats more of a shower thing! So I wouldnt request gifts!! 

Post # 21
24 posts
  • Wedding: September 2016

I don’t get it, either! I believe the negative comments concerning this approach are from old school brides or forever single ladies.

I can understand, traditionally, you don’t plan it, but this isn’t the 20’s and we don’t have 7 sister and 4 brothers to help with this crap. Things have changed.

Also, people in the same age gap aren’t in the same stage in life anymore. Again, things have changed. You can be 25 with 4 kids, 3 dads, no job or a childless ball busting lawyer. Masses of people aren’t on the same page anymore so it’s difficult to find people to attend let alone plan it!

I have every intention of planning or at the very least having a hand in an events concerning my wedding. Future Sister-In-Law will happily put her name on it and send out messages and help and what not, but she’ll be OK with following my direction or listening to my input.

I genuinely think if you want something done, do it yourself. No one will do it for you and half of the time if you dig deep enough concerning baby showers, bridal parties, whatever, the person being honoured did a helluva lot of planning.

Also, I don’t think anyone I kno could afford to foot those costs which is the main reason I liek to be involved.

Post # 22
1692 posts
Bumble bee

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kismet34: As
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julies1949 so rightly states, weddings follow exactly the same rules of good manners that apply to all other aspects of life. As such, there really is no rule that says “the one thing you should NEVER do is plan your own engagement party.”

What good manners really says, is that a gracious person does not overtly honour herself. You do not award yourself medals or trophies. You are not your own guest of honour when you are acting as hostess. You do not hold charitable fundraisers with yourself as the beneficiary. But what etiquette never does, is prevent hospitality, or forbid community-building celebration, or to encourage phoniness (pretention is always in bad taste.)

Now apply exactly the same rule to the various events people associate with weddings. If your father or friend choses to hold a party to celebrate your engagement, they can invite you as the guest of honour and arrange for the spotlight to be on you throughout the party. If the bride and groom choose to hold a party to celebrate their engagement, then they simply do it in such a way that they honour some or all of their guests instead of themselves. Maybe they invite their parents as guests of honour. Maybe they make a short speech about how important friends have been to them in the past, and how they intend to maintain those friendships after they are married. As long as the hosts are celebrating and honouring their guests rather than themselves, then they are being perfectly proper. Getting your friend or sister to pretend to be hosting it when you are the impetus behind the party will NOT make it more proper, but actually less so.

I am guessing that a “Stag and Drag” is the same as a “Stag and Doe”. Such events are extremely popular in rural and remote areas where there is little other entertainment. When going to a movie requires a two-hour commute, the townsfolk are extremely gratified by any local entertainment that may arise. In such communities, an engaged couple is seen as having a duty to throw a party for the entertainment of the town, and in return the townsfolk feel privileged to be able to contribute to the wedding. Small remote towns tend to be largely extended family anyway, and family are allowed to contribute to wedding costs. A bride and groom who decide knot — I mean, not — to live up to their community’s social expectations are in fact violating good etiquette. As the inimitable Samuel Wells wrote in 1887:

You must conform, to such an extent as not to annoy and give offense, to the customs, whether in dress or other matters, of the circle in which you move. This conformity is an implied condition in the social compact. It is a practical recognition of the right of others, and shows merely a proper regard for their opinions and feelings. If you can not sing in tune with the rest, or on the same key, remain silent. You may be right and the others wrong but that does not alter the case. Convince them, if you can, and bring them to your pitch, but never mar even a low accord.

If the circle in which you move, wants you to have a Stag-and-Doe, or would be gratified by you hosting an Engagement Party in their honour, then letting down your friends to make internet message-board participants happy would be in the worst possible taste.

And you can take that from an old-school etiquette afficionady who also happens to be a forever-single lady.


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